Al Sadd issued a statement in response to reports linking their manager Xavi to the vacant managerial post at Barcelona.
Xavi was considered one of the best midfielders of his generation and he was a key player in Barcelona’s first team for 17 seasons.
The Spaniard left Barcelona in 2015 to join the Qatari side of Al Sadd. After playing 117 times in four years, he retired from professional football in 2019.
Camp Nou is a perfect visual metaphor for Barcelona’s troubles
The 41-year-old has been their manager since then. He has 63 wins in his 95 games at the helm of Al Sadd.
Meanwhile, Barcelona are on the hunt for a new manager as Ronald Koeman was sacked this week.
The Dutchman has been under heavy pressure for several weeks. He leaves with Barcelona ninth in La Liga.
Lionel Messi called on his former club to name Xavi and talks are underway between the two parties.
However, via Twitter, Al Sadd attempted to suppress this information by suggesting that Xavi is “fully focused” on his games:
In response to what has been circulating recently, #AlSadd management reaffirms that Xavi has a two-year contract with the club and is fully focused on the team’s upcoming games, to maintain our lead at the top of the league and defend the title. “
Elsewhere, Man City boss Pep Guardiola has “no doubts” that Xavi is ready to become Barcelona boss:
âFirst of all, I don’t know what’s going to happen. They have an interim manager and I wish him good luck, he’s a close friend. Xavi, if that happens, I have no doubts he’s up to the job. Xavi knows the environment that is so important. He knows the game, he has passion. He has more experience now than I had when I took over.
âKoeman knows and Sergi knows and Xavi and I know, success depends on recruiting and players. People forget that we are in charge, but our influence is less than you think. The success that I have had was due to the quality of the players. Of course Xavi is really good, I wish if Xavi is the next manager he is doing well and I hope the team can come back step by step.
He added: âRonald and I know exactly that we depend, live and wait and we are here for the results. No one can survive without results, no Koeman, no Pep. He’s a friend of mine, I wish him the best and I will see him soon and I am sure he has done good things for the young players in the academy. Everyone knows that no matter what you do it depends on the job.